After graduating from San Marcos, Harvey Bottlesen continued his academic and athletic career at BYU. (Courtesy photo)

The Santa Barbara Athletic Round Table will be inducting seven new members into its Hall of Fame on Monday, Sept. 18. The Induction Class of 2023 includes four athletes, a coach, a community leader and a special achievement honoree.

This is the fifth in a series of stories about this year’s inductees.

Like a blistering forehand winner, Harvey Bottlesen made a huge impact in the Santa Barbara community.

He started the Santa Barbara Tennis Club and, along with Jerry Beaver and others, formed the legendary support group known as the Santa Barbara Tennis Patrons.

Together, the club and the patrons have grown the game in the community and helped produce many incredible athletes who have competed and won at the regional, national and international stages.

Harvey Bottlesen started the Santa Barbara Tennis Club and helped form the legendary Santa Barbara Tennis Patrons support group. (Courtesy photo)

Under Bottlesen’s leadership, the SBTC gained a national reputation as a top tennis venue. In addition to developing players, it drew such luminaries as Bobby Riggs, Pancho Gonzales, Vic Seixas, Bob Sherman and the Bryan brothers to play matches or make guest appearances at the club.

The renowned Bryan Twins, Mike and Bob, the most successful doubles team of all time, played some exhibition matches at the SBTC to raise funds for the UCSB tennis program and the Tennis Patrons.

The Tennis Patrons have played a huge role in promoting and supporting the sport in the community. They sponsor tournaments, provide after-school programs and offer low-cost clinics to local kids with free instruction and equipment.

The group was instrumental in raising funds to resurrect the men’s tennis program at SBCC back in 2015.

Bottlesen’s leadership goes far beyond tennis. The successful commercial real estate broker, entrepreneur and principal of a local financial institution, is a leader in the nonprofit world.

He currently serves as the chairman of the nonprofit James S. Bower Foundation, a highly regarded nonprofit that supports positive social and cultural evolution of our world.

He’s also held leadership posts with the Santa Barbara Foundation Roundtable, Hospice of Santa Barbara, Visiting Nurses and Hospice, and Hospice of Santa Barbara Foundation.

“Harvey’s leadership in our community has been transformative,” said Jon Clark, president of the James S. Bower Foundation, a local grant-maker that focuses on early childhood, education, end-of-life care, and the environment.

Before all of his success in business, Bottlesen was a star student athlete in town. He played basketball and tennis at San Marcos High, and he went undefeated on the tennis court in his senior year.

He is a member of the San Marcos Athletics Hall of Fame.

Bottlesen continued his tennis career at BYU and played four years for the Cougars. He was the Western Athletic Conference runner-up at No. 4 singles and first in No. 3 doubles at the 1966 WAC Championships, and won the WAC No. 3 doubles title in 1965

He returned to Santa Barbara and was hired as the first tennis pro at La Cumbre Country Club.

He had a vision of developing a new tennis facility that would provide a fun, and friendly experience for families and players of all levels.

With the help of financial supporters, that vision became a reality. 

And the tennis community can’t thank him enough.

The Class of 2023 includes Alex Mack (San Marcos High), Sami Hill (Dos Pueblos), Paula Charest Lilly (Bishop Diego) and Jenna Ridgway Corliss (San Marcos) being honored for their achievements as athletes; Greg Patton, a Bishop Diego and UCSB alum, recognized for his remarkable coaching career; San Marcos alum Harvey Bottlesen, who founded the Santa Barbara Tennis Club, is the community leader, and journalist John Zant, a UCSB alum, is being inducted for his seven decades of providing quality sports writing for the community.

In addition, the SBART is honoring one its founders, 96-year-old Bill Bertka. He is a L.A. Lakers legend, having been a part of 10 championship teams as an assistant coach and consultant.

The SBART Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony will be held at the Cabrillo Arts Pavilion. Tickets can be purchased at this linhttp://:

— Noozhawk sports editor Barry Punzal can be reached at Follow Noozhawk Sports on Twitter: @NoozhawkSports. Connect with Noozhawk on Facebook.